Bike ride from Folkstone to Rye through Romney Marsh

Members of the Grosvenor Cycle Club (‘Bikes + Beer’) went for a day out on Sunday and cycled about 30+ miles from Folkstone > Hythe > St Mary in the Marsh > Lydd > Camber Sands > Rye.

The very flat, leaisurely ride mostly followed Sustrans National Route 2, with a break for lunch at the Star Inn in St Mary in the Marsh and some paddling at Camber Sands.

Setting out along the coast from Folkstone to Hythe…

Cycling past Hythe station (terminus for the Romney Hythe & Dymchurch Railway; take this to visit Dungeness and see Derek Jarman’s garden) alongside the Royal Military Canal (built 1804-09 as part of defences in case of invasion during the Napoleonic Wars) we came across this mini version of an ‘acoustic mirror’ (giant concrete dishes built during the First World War as a precursor to radar) at Palmarsh footbridge.

Allegedly you could hear a person across the other side of the bridge whispering…

We stopped for a delicious lunch at the Star Inn in St Mary in the Marsh. The Norman church opposite was built in the 12C using Kentish ragstone, and stands on the site known as ‘Siwold’s Circe’ where there probably stood a Saxon church.

Inside the church there is a memorial to children’s book author Edith Nesbit (Five Children and It, The Railway Children) as well as some beautiful stained glass, and these (Norman?) figures embedded in the flagstones; they reminded me of the brass rubbings I used to do as a kid.

Filled with food and a (small!) Kentish Ale, we headed out across Romney Marsh towards Lydd and then to Camber Sands…

After a paddle in the sea, we reached Rye by the early evening and had a pint at the Ypres Castle Inn to celebrate…

The train back to London was a bit of an ‘adventure‘, but the company was good and Southern does provide some fine bike racks. My bike found a friend with matching panniers on the route out from Rye to Hastings.

Was a great day out, lovely bike route and felt properly summery!

ps. these Kind Nuts & Spices bars are amazing cycling snacks (not sponsored, just for my own reference!)

 

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